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Programs of Study

Students who major in American Studies develop into vigorous original thinkers, sharpening their analytical powers and critical insights.

Why Study American Studies at UMass Lowell?

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Develop Into an Original Thinker

The interdisciplinary nature of the program develops critical thinking, analysis and communication skills.
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Lowell as a Classroom

The city of Lowell's rich history of literature, emerging technologies, industry, and immigration provides unique opportunities for fieldwork, archival research, urban archeology and internships.

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Dig Deeper

The American Studies major has four tracks allows students the flexibility to pursue their specific area of interest: The City, the Environment & Technology; Class, Gender & Ethnicity; Popular Culture & the Arts; and Conflict & War in American Culture.

Program Overview

The UMass Lowell American Studies Program offers both a major and a minor. It includes faculty from departments such as English, Cultural Studies, History, Psychology, Sociology, and Political Science. 

Graduates of the program have pursued careers in government and social services; others seek certification to teach elementary or high school. Having developed skills in writing and analysis, American Studies majors have become successful executives, public relations representatives, product managers, speech writers, press secretaries, and journalists. American Studies has proven a strong foundation for students continuing their studies in law or in library and information sciences. 

For the latest course information please visit the UMass Lowell online Academic Catalog.

Major in American Studies

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Bachelor of Arts

Students have two options for organizing their coursework: The Discipline-Based/General Option or the Thematic-Based Option.

Students following the Discipline-Based Option will choose two disciplines from which to take 12 credits at the 300 level or above (six credits from each discipline) and one interdisciplinary course at the 300 level or above.

Students choosing the Thematic-Based Option will identify a theme to explore and choose five courses from the list approved for each theme. Three of these courses must be at the 300 level or higher. Click on the themes below to see listings of approved courses: 

All students are also encouraged to do a practicum or internship in their area of interest. 

Please see the online Undergraduate Catalog for course descriptions, degree pathways for general and thematic options.


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A minor in American Studies consists of 18-24 credits selected from the list maintained by the program coordinator. Read more about the American Studies minor in the UMass Lowell Academic catalog.